People

Clients do not look for firms but for the best teams of lawyers with the depth of experience they need to solve their public law problems. So we value our staff. We employ and are always on the lookout for great public lawyers with good experience and a passion for justice.

Find out about working at Chen Palmer or our current opportunities.

Mai Chen.

Mai Chen

Founding Partner

Mai Chen is the founding partner of Chen Palmer NZPLS, Barristers and Solicitors, Australasia’s first public law specialist firm, which she co-founded in 1994.

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Nick Russell

Partner

Nick Russell is an experienced public law litigator who has appeared as counsel in a range of key cases at the High Court, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court and Privy Council.

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Marina Matthews

Principal

Marina heads the firm's Education team. She has significant Parliamentary experience and has been a specialist advisor to several Education Ministers. She has experiece in a range of public policy processes including the preparation of Cabinet papers, briefing Ministers, and preparing for Select Committees.

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Anthony Russell

Principal

Anthony specialises in providing expert employment law advice, and has provided quality advice across a range of sectors. Anthony has been practicising law since 1991 and has represented a wide range of employment law clients, particularly in the health, education and infrastructure industries.

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Dani.

Dani Gardiner

Principal

Dani is an experienced public lawyer and has a Masters of Laws with Honours (Public Law specialisation) from the University of Auckland and a Bachelor of Laws (First Class Honours) from the University of Otago.

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James Dunne

Senior Associate - leader Parliament Team

James has valuable inside knowledge of how Parliament works in New Zealand. He specialises in law reform and strategic public law and is an expert in the regulation of new psychoactives, legal highs and party pills.

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Claire.

Claire English

Senior Associate - Employment

Claire was admitted to the bar in 2002 after graduating from the University of Waikato with an LLB/BA. Since being admitted, Claire has specalised in employment law and has a great deal of experience in advising clients on a range of employment law issues and opportunities.

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Katrina Van Houtte

Senior Associate

Katrina was admitted to the bar in 2006 and has experience working closely with a wide range of clients, including large corporations, construction companies, international insurance firms, iwi and individuals.

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David Collins

Intermediate Associate

David was admitted to the bar in 2007 and has gained experience working closely with a range of clients, including within central and local government, as well as private sector clients.

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Katy Bexley

Intermediate Associate

Katy was admitted to the bar in 2009, after graduating from Victoria University with a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours) in International Relations.

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Michael Wakefield

Intermediate Associate

Michael was admitted to the bar in 2007and has experience working in the Local Government Sector in London, providing legal advice to colleagues and members of various Local Authorities.

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Kate Broadhurst

Intermediate Associate

Katrina was admitted to the bar in 2009 and has worked in leading commercial law firms specialising in commercial litigation.  She has experience advising clients in a wide range of areas

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George McLellan

Associate

George McLellan studied law at the University of Canterbury, with a focus on human rights, environmental law, public law and administrative law.  George also has significant experience working for news and media organisations.

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Jessica Braithwaite

Associate

Jessica graduated in 2011 with a Bachelor of Laws with First Class Honours and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Classical Studies and Political Science from Victoria University of Wellington

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Max Hardy

Associate

Max has an LLB (Hons) with First Class Honours. His study focused on public law, especially local authority, human rights and international law.

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Alice.

Alice Krzanich

Associate

Alice Krzanich completed a Bachelor of Laws with Honours and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in History at the University of Auckland.

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Heidi Baillie

Associate

Heidi graduated in 2011 with a Bachelor of Law with First Class Honours from Otago University. She holds Bachelor of Science and Master of Planning degrees, also from Otago University.

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Allan Brent

Associate

Allan graduated in 2011 with an LLB and BSc (geography) from the University of Otago.  Allan had a strong focus on public law during his study – he read resource management, administrative law, international law, international environmental law, and the Treaty of Waitangi.

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Rachel Hyde

Law Clerk

Rachel has recently completed a Bachelor of Laws with first class honours at Victoria University of Wellington specialising in human rights, international law and environmental law.

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Sarah Mead

Law Clerk

Sarah is a recent LLB/ BA graduate from Victoria University of Wellington, she joins Chen Palmer as a Law Clerk.

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Denise O'Connor

Admin Support

Denise provides day-to-day administrative support for Chen Palmer lawyers.

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Razia Bibi

Admin support

Razia provides day-to-day administrative support for Chen Palmer lawyers.

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Vicky Davis

Admin support

Vicky provides day-to-day administrative support for Chen Palmer lawyers.

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Shaz Khan

Admin support

Shaz provides day-to-day administrative support for Chen Palmer lawyers.

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Emma Lowe

General Manager of NZ Asian Leaders

Emma is responsible for implementing the vision of NZ Asian Leaders, supporting sponsors and members and managing the day to day operations of the organisation.

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Lisa Martin

Financial Controller

Lisa Martin manages the financial administration and accounting software for our business. Fundamentally she ensures our debtors keep…

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Pippin

Chief Morale Officer

Pippin is a very friendly and energetic Border Collie. She is always avaliable to keep staff and clients entertained.

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